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Which Bike? Comments and Questions on what is the best bike for YOU, for YOUR trip. Note that we believe that ANY bike will do, so please remember that it's all down to PERSONAL OPINION. Technical Questions for all brands go in their own forum.
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  #1  
Old 30 Aug 2007
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Caponord out, Transalp in?

I have a dilemma. My trusty Capo is getting a bit long in the tooth and I'm considering trading in for a Transalp (nearly new). I need some advice from you lot out there, so here goes.

The Capo is a 2001 model, 22k miles and because of a strict regime of servicing it does go sweetly. It is comfy for two (my wife falls asleep on the pillion), has reasonable performance/consumption - but - the needles have fallen south on both the tacho and the speedo, the screen and plastics squeal at higher revs, and the transmission has backlash. I've just replaced the rear Tourance at £100 and the front brake lever switch flickers the brake light on and off inadvertently. The rear shock seems to be on its way out too. In all, a few minor irritating hassles but is it about to get worse - very much worse? Are the rumours about Aprilia Grenades true?

The Transalp is very new, but secondhand. The build standard is surprisingly poor in some respects but it all fits and goes quite well. The performance is obviously down on the Capo but one up will be fine for commuting as well as travelling (easier in the garage too). Some of our luggage will fit, and some won't, so there will be a cost there too to consider. We have used a Transalp in NZ with hard luggage all over, and we found it OK, reasonably comfortable, but a bit light on the front end when loaded. You have fun crossing those combined rail/road bridges with the narrow front wheel.

I stood the two bikes side by side. The Capo is a work of art in terms of the Alu welding, general finish, materials etc even if the style is not to everyone's taste. The Capo has a whole lot more of everything except reputation for reliability - and yet....
The Transalp will cost me the Capo and about £2200. But is it worth it? I feel I'll regret it the minute I do the deal, but will the Capo cost lots in the long run?

By the way, offroad the Capo is fine as long as the front is loaded, ie you stand on the pegs even on Tourance tyres. Staying seated or having a pillion is not fun. And the reason we had a Transalp in NZ is that the Beemer we were using broke down, something the Capo hasn't yet done.
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Old 31 Aug 2007
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That's one of those tough questions ricardo that I guess we all go over.
I tend to stare and stare at any bike that I have decided to sell, part-exchange or whatever and it does not help in making the decision!

Over the years I suppose my partial answer has developed by owning more than one bike, so how about keeping the Capo (for two up riding) and buying the Transalp (or whatever other bike takes your fancy) for solo riding (say).
Once you own more than one bike, you are not quite so bothered when one of them is "off the road" with whatever work is required, and you even consider doing the work yourself because you are not in any hurry to get it back on the road - I can almost see why some people spend more time tinkering with bikes than actually riding them - all very theraputic!!

Maybe one day I will own a single, a twin (parallel or V, or both!) + a triple and an inline 4 cyl (or a V four?).
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Old 1 Sep 2007
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Good luck. I'd keep your Capo. Its a truly classy machine. IMO, it's worth it to fix it up.

Last edited by mollydog; 26 Mar 2009 at 07:06.
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